Growing up in Greece, Iosif Lazaridis shared his compatriots’ appreciation that they lived in “the crossroads of Europe and Asia,” past and present.
To the east lay Turkey and Armenia, gateways to the Near East and Asia. To the north were the Balkans, leading the way into central Europe.
Lazaridis wondered how people in these regions were related to one another. Who shared long-ago ancestry with whom? How might those forebears have moved around this part of the world and had children with one another throughout millennia? How deeply connected were their modern descendants despite national borders and political conflicts?